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LondonlawyerJ, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 822
Experience:  Experienced solicitor
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I need some advise regarding a tenancy issue. Long story

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I need some advise regarding a tenancy issue. Long story short I was the tenant under an AST. There were many issues with the property and the tenancy. I got behind with my rent, the landlady then attempted to end the tenancy with just 14 days notice.
I explained that she wasn't allowed to do this so she issues a notice to quite - I had already handed in my notice however. I explained that the notice could not stand either as she had not protected my deposit within the legal timeframes. Some of the issues
at the house were: 2 years of issues with heating and hot water, washing machine broke I replaced it on a monthly rental scheme and paid for it and I still will need to pay for this over the next 15 months despite not needing it at my new proerty, them not
protecting my deposit for many months, no fire regs on the furniture, no energy efficency certs being issued, no annual gas safety checks etc. She is now chasing for what she believes is outstanding in rent I have explained that to date I have chosen to not
legal chase regarding the compliance issues with the rental. She plans to chase the rent she believes is owed legally. What are my options please and what advise do you offer with regard to what my action should be? Thank you.
Hello I am a solicitor with 20 years experience. I will try to answer this for you.
Can you just tell me a little more please. Are you still in the property. Whatvlevelbof rent arrears is she claiming? How much isbyour deposit?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Hi yes here are some more details:
I am no longer living at the property. The rent arrears were around 3500 (I stopped paying rent when she tried to get us out with 14 days notice as I took advice and then discovered all of the compliance failings on their part). I agreed for them to use my deposit against the arrears so this reduced it to they tehn reduced it by 1300 additionally as 'compensation for securing the deposit late' - I did not agree to this figure they just deducted it. Currently they are claiming for £2,000 arrears.Hope that helps & please let me know if you need any more info. Look forward to hearing from you.
AS I am sur eyou are waware ffailure to [rotect your deposit proer;y canlead yo an order for compensation fro you of upto 3 times the value of the deposit. In reality of they have put your deposit in a scheme, albeit late you are very unlikely to get anything like that if you bring a claim.
AS far as the other issues are concerned:
Water heating & space heating. The landlord has a duty under S11 Landlord & Tenant Act to keep these in working order. There may be compensation you can claim for this.
Gas safety certificates, no energy certificates. If no harm has been done to you then there is no claim you can make regarding these.
The washing machine. Dies your tenancy state anything about keeping this in repair, were there any representations made regarding this by the landlord. If not there is probably nothing you can do about it. If there is, then it will depend on the facts whether you can claim anything. eg. how long was it in disrepair, did you tell the landlord, did he try to fix it, did you give him sufficient time before replacing it etc?
It might be a good idea to reply to your landlord's demands by stating that if he brings a claim you will counterclaim for :
Breach of deposit rules,
Disrepair to the heating/hot water,
Cost of washing machine.
Warm him that your claim is likely to be greater than his, but suggest that if both you and he walk away you will not pursue your claims against him.
As long as this is what you want of course.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thank you that's very helpful.Yes my position is very much that we each should just walk away from this as I could claim as could they.Does it make a difference that they self imposed compensation for late filing of my deposit? I did not agree to this figure of the conduct of compensation in that manner.Could you advise the best wording to use when writing to her please about my counterclaim?And finally as it will be a counter claim I assume I would just wait for court paper to be issued and then detail that I wish to make a counter claim?
Their unilateral offer of compensation is not relevant to your ability to counter claim.
something like this.
If you do proceed with your proposed claim against me for arrears of rent I will counterclaim against you as follows:
1) Your breach of statutory duties under S11 Landlord & Tenant Act:
You failed to keep in repair the facilities for space heating and sanitation despite notice from me of the problems.
2) YOur failure to place my deposit inf deposit protection scheme wihtin the legal time limits,:
You failed to place my deposit in a scheme until..... this meant it took you....... to do this. This is well outside the legal time limit for doing. I will seek compensation equivalent to 3 time the level of my deposit for this breach of your duties.
3) Failure to repair/replace washing machine timeously or at all. (inset brief details).
I will seek compensation to set off against your arrears claim against me and it is highly likely that the value of my counterclaim will exceed your claim against me.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thank you and do I just respond to the court papers if she does go ahead with the details of my counter claim?
well yes, it will be small claims court action and you will b able to do your papers online.
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